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Taylor, Robin: Heart Disc

Danish multi-instrumentalist Robin Taylor returns with yet another offering from his seemingly endless musical vaults, this time digging back to 1999, which isn't that long ago considering some of his recent releases were originally recorded 20 years ago. Heart Disc is an adventurous listen and it's difficult to categorize or pinpoint just where the overall musical direction will lead, but this is part of the appeal of Taylor's work. If you agree to hop on board his musical train, you must do so with the condition that you abandon any preconceived notions of where you think the music will lead you. Taylor is primarily a guitarist, but on this disc and as he has done in the past, he also tries his hand at various other forms of instrumentation as well such as processed bass, various synthesizers and loops to mention just a few.

So just exactly what is Heart Disc all about then, is it jazz, electronic or just the work of another sonic madman in search of his sound? Well in many ways the music on Heart Disc is an amalgamation of some of the finer moments of avant-garde and free jazz, interspersed with splashes of electronic experimentation and minimalism. The disc's first track "Vatican Heartbeat", with it's funky backbeat and synth bass instantly drew comparisons with some of King Crimson's more recent material, while tracks "Cello & Hammer" and "Worm" tend to lean towards highlighting the dynamic and dueling musical interplay between long time Taylor collaborators Karsten Vogel (saxophones) and Hugh Steinmetz (trumpets). The majority of this disc actually features very little of Taylor's manic guitar playing save for some savage soloing in "German Foot Blues" but even then he only let's go towards the end of the track. Think of Heart Disc as more of an ensemble piece.

There are plenty of moments of musical fireworks on this disc as Taylor continues to surround himself with an excellent supporting cast of musical co-conspirators who are eager to be known not just as lab rats in Taylor's sonic lab, but to have their own large stake in the experiment. Heart Disc is a well rounded and ultimately satisfying listen, never boring, but rather brazen and adventurous.

Track Listing
1) Vatican Heartbeat
2) Cello & Hammer
3) Kizzer
4) German Foot Blues
5) Distorted Onion
6) Worm
7) ..Or Is It Kisser?
8 ) R.A.M.S.E.S.
9) Refit (Cello & Hammer)
11) Loophole

Added: January 26th 2006
Reviewer: Ryan Sparks
Related Link: Robin Taylor Website
Hits: 2470
Language: english

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